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Most Americans View A Dream Home As Beyond Their Reach

A new study from IPX1031 reveals a mismatch between belief and reality when it comes to owning a dream home. It shows a full 9 in 10 (90%) regard owning a home a critical component of the American dream. One-third (33%) stated that owning a home in 2022 is a necessity. That notwithstanding, more than half (51%) do not feel the age-old ability of Americans to own their own homes remains an attainable goal.

The vast majority of respondents (94%) do not live today in a residence they consider their ideal, the prime factor being that such residences are beyond their budgets at a time when the Federal Reserve has pushed interest rates to their highest levels in decades. It’s not a big stretch that no more than 53% of Millennials and 47% of Gen Xers now renting report they intend to buy new residences in the next half decade.

The study by IPX1031 included surveys of more than 1,000 American individuals, slicing across the four generations. The goal: To better grasp these Americans’ home buying habits and what their ideal homes – including vacation properties – look like.

Dream locations

As to where respondents believed their dream home would be most likely to be found, the top states are California, Colorado, Florida, New York and Washington. More than a quarter (28%) felt their dream home would likely be situated in suburban America. The beach was favored by 22% and the country by 20% of respondents.

A majority of Baby Boomers, as well as members of Generation X and Generation Z, envision a dream home being available to them for under $500,000. One in two (50%) report the perfect asking price would be $499,999.

Design details

Americans have long held thoughts about what their dream homes would look like, a fact made clear by the results of the IPX1031 study. Modern, ranch, Victorian, farmhouse and cabin home styles in that order topped respondents’ wish lists. When it comes to interiors of homes, minimalist, traditional, contemporary and eclectic were the words that came closest to describing their ideal residential styles.

Four-bedroom homes were preferred over three-bedroom residences by 35% to 20% and bathroom preferences followed suit, 38% preferring three bathrooms and 35% desiring two or fewer. Those responding also were asked what qualities would sell them on a house, 64% preferring a home with a view, 62% a sprawling backyard, 61% coveting a spacious family room and 58% a front porch or balcony. The family room represented the setting where most respondents (70%) intended spending most time

Asked to identify features they’d find most irresistible in a dream home, almost one in six (59%) cited land and privacy. Nearly half (48%) felt a hobby room would be the luxury feature they’d most enjoy, while 42% said a home theater would be that feature.

Vacation homes

Somewhat surprisingly, not much difference was spotted between the generations in desire to own not one but two homes. That desire was most notable in Generation Z, with 32% of respondents from that age cohort pining for a vacation home as well as a main home. The percentage fell to 25% among Baby Boomers, and just 24% for both Millennials and Generation X. Respondents named Florida, California, Hawaii and Italy as their favored dream vacation home locations.

Conducted in September 2022, the survey polled 1,062 individuals across the U.S, who were divided among four generations. They were Gen Z (ranging in age from 18 to 25), Millennials (26 to 41), Gen X (42 to 57) and Baby Boomers from 58 to 70.

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